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Q&A with the Founder of aleur

The Instagram profile of the Montréal-based brand aleur is full of dreamy, warmly-lit shots of models in the most luxurious-looking loungewear imaginable. I was immediately taken in by the gorgeous silks and organic cotton, which looked so soft it was like I could feel them through my feed. Learning that the brand was ethical and sustainable was the icing on top of the decadent cake.

Alexandra Watson, who founded aleur in 2016, was kind enough to answer some of my questions about style, money, and her mission to elevate self-care.

Describe your personal style in 3 words.

Romantic, Relaxed, Pastel.

If you could only wear one outfit for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Silk skirt and organic cotton tee.

What is your background? Were you always in fashion, or did you never expect to become a designer?

I have a degree in Anthropology, and am a self-taught fashion designer. I improved my technical skill while living in London by doing design assistant internships. I've always been working in fashion, which gave me a great deal of marketing, sales and merchandising experience. I spent 2 years in London, researching, and planning the launch of my brand. I've always wanted to be in fashion, and am so happy I have the opportunity to have so much creative control.

Atelier Aleur is an ethical and sustainable brand. What impacted this decision? How did you figure out the best way to do it?

Honestly, working for American Apparel was my inspiration for creating a vertically integrated company. It was the first time I heard about a brand designing, sampling, photographing and producing all in the same vicinity. Once I knew this was possible, I was turned off fast-fashion completely. I'm a strong believer in helping the local economy thrive. I want to create jobs, buy local deadstock, and give my community a real sustainable option.

I want my clients to finish their day in their dream loungewear piece, and go to sleep happy knowing that they've been draped in silk all evening.

Your mission is "to deliver elevated loungewear that enhances your self-care rituals at home." Tell me a little bit about why this mission spoke to you.

I feel passionate about enhancing self-care rituals at home so that women have a safe haven to recenter. I've found that I feel so much more confident in my mind and my body when I'm wearing natural materials. They literally allow your skin to breathe, and have a softness that stimulates your brain's pleasure center.

Owning your own business is tough, especially when all you really want to be doing is creating. What budgeting tools do you use to keep your finances straight?

I love taking off every Sunday to sit in a cafe and do all my computer work. Wave is a great secret tool for budgeting.

Producing ethical and sustainable clothing is more expensive than fast fashion for many reasons. What do you say when people ask you why some of your pieces are so expensive?

Quality costs money. I pay very close attention to detail, from the fabric content, to the production. I only use the best natural fabrics or rare deadstocks and ethically produce my entire collection locally. aleur is an investment into helping you feel the best you can in your home. I want my clients to finish their day in their dream loungewear piece, and go to sleep happy knowing that they've been draped in silk all evening.

What's your favorite affordable self-care ritual?

Incense! I love waking up, slipping into an aleur robe and lighting sandalwood incense and sipping a cashew cappuccino.

Do you have a favorite moment from your time creating Atelier Aleur? What is it, and what made it special?

I feel so proud when I have my friends model for me. It's in those moments that my business seems very genuine and authentic.

Thank you to Alexandra Watson for participating in this Q&A with me.

Want to learn more about aleur? Go to their website to shop and learn more: https://www.atelieraleur.com/

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